Labor union march by Graduate Employee Organization UAW at UMass Amherst. Graduate employees bring their proposals to management to counter regressive takebacks from UMass proposals. See also: http://geouaw.org
March 8, 2005
GEO is a union...
GEO http://www.geouaw.org is a unit of United Auto Workers (UAW) Local 2322, based in Holyoke, which also represents manufacturing, day care, human service, and fundraising employees. We are also part of the UAW international union based in Michigan. Through our local and the UAW, we have access to experienced staff and the UAW's research, health and safety, and legal departments; help with negotiations, grievances, and arbitration; political action; education and training; union publications and more.
If you're a Teaching Assitant (TA), Teaching Associate (TO), Research Assistant (RA), Project Assitant (PA), Assistant Resident Director (ARD), Intern, Trainee, or Working Fellow on this campus, you're covered by GEO stipends and benefits.
Graduate employees at UMass have been organized since Novermber 1990, when graduate students voted in favor of unionization and to have the UAW represent them. Then as now, GEO played a central role in the campus coalition to help save the University by fighting budget cuts, which were rather severe at the time. After a 10-day strike in Novermber 1991, our first contract took effect, dramatically improving the working conditions for graduate employees on this campus.
Here are a few things our contract negotiations have gotten graduate students over the course of GEO's history:
* free Health Insurance, including mental health (1991 contact)
* Tuition/ Fee waivers (1994 contract)
* a Reasonable Workload (1994 contract--grad students in some departments had to teach two classes as part of their appointment, whereas now they teach one)
* a Grievance Procedure (1991 contract)
* ALANAA Recruitment and Retention funding
* a clearer Sexual Harassment Policies (1994 contract)
* a Dental Plan (1999 contract)
Since the inception of GEO our stipends have more than doubled: